Everything has it's beauty, but not everyone sees it. - Confucius
Sometimes the picture doesn't have to be perfect; it's the captured moment that counts. - me
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Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Strange day

I woke up to the rumbling sound of thunder outside and rain lashing at the window. Just what I needed on a day off work, and I wasn’t feeling too good myself. I felt like a wreck; lifeless, no energy, and no will to do anything.

I took Jim for his walk, thinking it might inject some life into me; but it didn’t. We got back, both wet and miserable. I put the computer on and sat and stared at the screen. I turned it off. I wandered around the house feeling fed up. The storm had passed, and the rain was easing a little. I thought about doing all the things that need doing round the house, but I just couldn’t get motivated enough to do anything. I hate feeling like this!

I put the computer back on and started to edit some pictures I’d taken over the past couple of weeks, but my heart wasn’t in it. I phoned my mum; she wasn’t in. I dragged my body back to bed, maybe some more sleep was what I needed. Getting up at 3.30 a.m. every day was beginning to take its toll, and I’m not getting any younger. Another birthday looming next week, and…………

A couple of hours later I woke up. The rain had stopped, and the clouds were taking on a brightness, as the sun was shining behind them. I’ll go out.

I went to local number 2, and as I pulled into the car park it became clear I wasn’t going to be alone. Cars everywhere. I made my way up the steps, the sun was shining now, and the tree blossom petals were falling like snow in the breeze. Chiffchaff were calling from the tree tops, and there seemed to be butterflies everywhere.

I made my way to the hide, hearing just a couple of Sedge Warblers on the way, but being as elusive as ever. I scanned the far shore of the island; a couple of Lapwing, pair of Shoveler, Herons sitting in the trees. A pair of Coots were carrying on the next generation just in front of the hide, from the same spot a couple of days earlier two Great Crested Grebes had the same idea.

Then I heard the burst of song from the Cetti’s Warbler. Have to go and look then, so I made my way through the bushes, and began scouring the shrubs and reeds. I could hear him, but couldn’t see him. A couple of Peacock Butterflies settled just in front of me.

A Brimstone flashed past like a bright light in the sun, but too quick for a picture. I sat down on the damp grass, and waited for the Cetti’s to show himself. Some Lesser Celandine, (I think), was growing nearby

And a beautiful blue flower, standing proudly erect in the sun.

No idea what it is, but very nice. The elusive bird kept calling, but not showing, so I made do with my first Orange Tip this year.

He seemed to like the blue flower too. A Speckled Wood almost landed on my foot, thought better of it, and settled amongst some grass instead.

Still no sign of Mr. Elusive, so I made my way back to the car, and stopped off at local number one on the way home.

More people, and the local rowing club seemed to have taken over the lake for the day. I made my way to where a Mute Swan had nested last year, to see if she had returned. I’d noticed a few days ago, there was a nest, but no occupants as yet. And there she was, sitting. I took a couple of shots from a good distance, so as not to disturb her.

And then she gently rolled an egg over in the nest

I wondered if it was the same pair as last year. They raised six beautiful Cygnets, and it was a joy to record their progress from egg to young adult. I left her in peace, and carried on my way. A Chiffchaff was singing from some bushes, so I stopped and waited to see if he would show himself. He did.

and gave me a few shots too.
Food was on my mind now, and the lake was getting busy with people out enjoying the late sun of the day, so I decided to head home.

A strange day really. The weather so extreme, more Butterflies than birds, and me.
I think I need a holiday.


  1. what an English spring time can do for the soul...Excellent butterfly photos!

  2. The way you felt this morning Keith is routine for me! (Not really.) We all get those days.
    Great shots of the Orange-tip and the Chiffchaff.

  3. It may have been a strange day Keith but it carried on rather well. A lovely story of your doings today with some great pictures - the lighting on the Chiffchaff is beautiful.

  4. No one is immune from getting the blues now and then...but all in all I'd say it was pretty interesting!..Great photos.

  5. Great post Keith. Sorry you didn't feel so good today, I know that feeling and it comes out of nowhere! Such beautiful photos again and your flower if I'm not mistaken is Ladies Smock sometimes known as Cuckoo flower (Cardamine Pratensis), I did have to look the latin name up!
    Gorgeous pics of the Chiffchaff.

  6. love the butterflies - they are not posing for me at the moment!

  7. Thanks Chris. I think spring has to be my favourite time of the year, always something new around the corner.

  8. Thanks Graham. Monday blues on a Wednesday. I must be cracking up! :)
    I tried some flight shots of the Orange Tip, but, er, best left in the bin I think ;)

  9. Thank you Tricia. It didn’t turn out too bad in the end. That lighting was just perfect for that Chiffchaff. I was very pleased with how it came out.

  10. Thank you Dixxie. I think it must be my age :)

  11. Thank you for that ShySongbird; and the ID. I’m not very good with wild flowers. Ladies Smock, a lovely name.

  12. Thanks Pete. I was amazed at how many were flying around in the sun. I just sat near some flowers, and waited for them to come close.

  13. Great set of photos Keith. I think we all get days like that where we don't want to do anything.
    I only work nights and know what it can be like.
    The best cure is either rest, or get outside like you did anyway !
    There's always something new to photograph, or another lifer around the corner :-)
    That orange tip is absolutely beautiful.
    Keep up the fine work my friend.

  14. Thank you Nick. It certainly makes a difference just getting out like that. Not always possible, but gives moments to saviour when we can.

  15. When life indoors isn't too bright you can't beat getting out. Great post. Lady's smock is one of my favourites (Richard Mabey in Spring Flowers also notes regional names Milkmaids, Fairy flower and May flower), and I haven't seen it yet - nor any butterflies. Send some down to the IoW, will you?

  16. Thanks Rob, and thanks for stopping by and commenting.
    Butterflies on their way ;)

  17. i am not a photographer but i can say you are great and superb in capturing these creatures, it is really complimnenting and one can really appreciate the beauty of nature, keep it up and wish to have more of your artwork.

  18. Thank you lolit for your visit, and kind words. Much appreciated.